Dustin Lynch Takes On NYC For 'Current Mood' Release | #iHeartUnfiltered
By James Dinh
September 16, 2017
#iHeartUnfiltered gives fans an exclusive glimpse at a day in the life of some of your favorite stars. From behind-the-scenes photos to candid quotes, iHeartRadio's series is all about providing readers with a one-of-a-kind look into the routines of the rich and famous.
Dustin Lynch is a man of many emotions and it's all showcased on his new album, Current Mood, which marks his first adventurous stray away from his country formula. But these feelings aren't emoted simply from his imagination. In fact, if you grab a copy of his third studio album, you'll hear 13 stories straight from the star's most recent chapter of his life.
On the day before his album release, the 32-year-old country star invited iHeartRadio to tag along for a jam-packed itinerary of promo. From his early morning set on the TODAY show to a lunch stop at Chelsea's cozy Cafeteria restaurant and his evening iHeartRadio Album Release, it was stop after stop for the chart-topper and we were right besides him up until the release of Current Mood. Take a look at what happened when we hit the road with Dustin Lynch in our newest installment of #iHeartUnfiltered!
In this installment of #iHeartUnfiltered, @dustinlynchmusic invites us to take on New York City in promotion for his new album, #CurrentMood. From his @todayshow performance to a pit stop for some afternoon grub, it was a busy day as the country crooner worked the promotional trail on the day before his album launch. See what went down as we tagged along with Lynch up until his iHeartRadio Album Release Party. (📷: @tylertwin06)
9:04 AM: It's bright and early (and we mean bright and early) but Dustin Lynch is ready to go. He's decked out in his outfit for the day and has an accompanying smile to help make the early call time that much better. He's currently held up in his dressing room, getting some touch-ups and waiting for the day to unravel.
9:10 AM: Being part of a daily morning show requires a lot of coordination and Dustin is learning the ropes for his Thursday morning performance. At the moment, he's waiting in the hallways of NBC because of a segment schedule change. Maria Shriver is spotted nearby.
9:33 AM: As he walks onto the TODAY set, he offers a friendly wave to hosts Kathie Lee and Hoda, who are set in place for their next segment. Moments later, he's mic'd up, rehearsing for his number and ready to go live to the American audience.
9:47 AM: Shortly before the TODAY crew receives the on-air cue, Dustin is greeted by the women of the hour. "Dustin," Hoda screams from across the set, before giving the singer a warm hug. Kathie Lee joins them for some small talk about her house in Connecticut.
9:52 AM: Fun fact: Filming a performance for live television doesn't always offer the kind of magic that we see in the comforts of our living room, so unfortunately, Dustin's vocals are low to our in-studio ears due to the band's offering. Still, after a look up on TODAY's official site, you can hear that he nailed it.
9:56 AM: Before heading off-set, Dustin, his accompanying band and the two hosts pose for photos together, but not before Kathie comments on the singer's strong build. Dustin returns the compliments with boxes of his Stay Country clothing line for the pair.
"I had to bring you some gifts. We got a little swag in here," he says. "Stay Country is a clothing brand that we've had out for a little bit and our new line is coming out this fall. Figured I'd give y'all a little sneak peek."
10:29 AM: As we walk into Fox, a member of the NYPD approaches Dustin and asks for a photo. Dustin fulfills her requests and spends a few polite moments with her.
11:49 AM: After leaving Fox, it appears the NYPD has an affinity for Dustin as we spot another police officer approach Dustin and ask for a photo.
12:33 PM: It's a little after noon and a man has to eat, so we're off to Chelsea's Cafeteria restaurant, which just so happens to be one of Dustin's favorite spots in the Big Apple. Seated outside, he orders green eggs and ham as well as an açaí bowl.
Fun fact #2: Dustin has a killer smile for a reason. Before leaving the restaurant, he stops by the restroom to get his floss on. It's all about dental hygiene, people.
1:24 PM: Twitter HQ is the next stop on our itinerary and we're in walking distance, so we leave the cars behind and take on the sunny afternoon streets.
1:35 PM: You can find snacks, comfy couches and great lighting inside of Twitter HQ. Dustin gears up to answer some fan questions and exchanges some comedic banter with the staff before diving deep. "Why the paddle?" he asks in reference to the handheld Twitter device. "Did anyone ever get hit with one of these in high school? They suck. I did."
2:08 PM: Dustin answers a whole string of questions about Current Mood, but he gets the most laughs out during talk about a spider. "'There's a spider in my bunk. Do I kill it, set it free or love it and leave it alone?'" he reads of the fan-submitted question with a chuckle. "Michelle, we just became best friends, but I'm killing that sucka though."
5:29 PM: With just his manager and driver in-tow, we drive our way through the SoHo neighborhood to iHeartRadio's downtown location, giving Dustin a chance to take in the views and talk about why he made this album just for himself.
6:31 PM: Dustin Lynch is in the building, but it's hard to miss that, especially with the size of his entourage. Yet, after his team exchanges pleasantries with our team, it becomes clear that southern charm is the real deal.
6:41 PM: After some unwinding in the dressing room, Dustin is off to his first stop in the building to sit down with Premiere Network. It's a casual conversation about an upcoming benefit show, sports and the sexy songs on his new album. Asked if he thinks anybody will think those cuts are about them, he chuckles. "Yes, I do," he says. "These songs were inspired by events that happened to me. All 13 songs on this album I've live. I think there's going to be a lot of speculation. It's a little exciting for me."
7:00 PM: Dustin and his crew head off to take portraits with iHeartRadio Photo Editor Rachel Kaplan. It's all pensive stares (and a few smiles) as he clutches the zipper on his jacket and turns it on for the camera lens in front of a black backdrop.
7:12 PM: Next up, he's off to our backdoor area to speak with iHeartRadio's Ellie Lee. "I grew up loving and pretending to be like Garth Brooks and George Straight," Dustin explains. "I've been blessed to be on some of the biggest tours in the world in the past few years and I see what those guys and girls have done to get there and I've learned so much for them. That's the goal. I want to get to where I can headline stadiums and amphitheaters and big arenas, play the Garden here one day."
7:42 PM: Dustin is sorting through some technical issues during rehearsals, but the sounds of his new album cuts like "Back on It" and "Party Song" feel great in the flesh.
9:37 PM: With less than 30 minutes until showtime, Dustin and his band slowly pour into the tour bus, which is parked behind our building. It's a lavish vehicle, filled with Playstation gear, multiple beds and, of course, plenty of liquor. If you're wondering, it's a Tequila (Reposado) and Whiskey (Jack Daniels) kind of night.
9:43 PM: The man of the hour heads to the back of the tour bus and comes out to his entourage with a wardrobe inquiry. He must choose between a light blue or light pink denim jacket. "You didn't see this. I'm getting a head start," he says as he downs a shot of Whiskey and heads to the bathroom to make his final decision on wardrobe.
9:50 PM: Dustin walks out in a salmon shirt and the light blue denim jacket as he waits for his bandmates to make their big entrance for group shots. The pre-show gathering also includes our participation and I'm all game until I realized I grabbed the Tequila shot instead of the Whiskey offering.
"We started kicking butt at 3 AM. We're about to kick even more butt at 11 PM. To the longest day but the best day of our lives. Here's to album three," Dustin says during a toast with his team. "The next chapter starts now."
9:55 PM: Back in the dressing room, it's time for the band to plug-in, do final touch ups and make their way to the grand entrance to the stage. There's a momentary feeling of chaos as the team bands together to prep for showtime.
10:00 PM: "Tonight, one of my buddies, Dustin Lynch is going to play and he's got a new record that's going to come out in a few hours," host Bobby Bones tells the crowd, before Dustin jumps on stage to kick things off with Current Mood's lead single, "Seein' Red."
10:06 PM: Later on, Dustin reveals that he had about 100 working titles for the set and nailed it down to four. "I realized that all 13 of these songs are situations I've been in, relationships I've been in, adventures I've been on, parties I've had, it's currently made me who I am as a person, so I was, like, Current Mood, that's the one. No doubt about it," he reiterates to the intimate crowd.
10:11 PM: During the Karen Fairchild-featured "Love Me Or Leave Me Alone," Dustin reveals that he played the song for the first time on Luke Bryan's tour bus. "This is, in my opinion, going to be your career song," Bones tells Dustin.
10:38 PM: After the live radio broadcast of the set ends, Dustin grabs a drink and his guitar to perform "Why We Call Each Other." He says it was inspired by that 2 AM text message. "I'll be up for you," screams one female fan in the audience.
10:54 PM: To close out the show, Dustin sings a familiar song to the '90s babies in the crowd with a cover of Sugar Ray's "When It's Over," calling it "one of the flavors in the cocktail of Current Mood."
Photo: Katherine Tyler / Rachel Kaplan for iHeartRadio